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Online Ed.D. in Educational Leadership

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51 Credits

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December 15-January 31 (Fall Only)

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No GRE/GMAT Required

About the Program

The University of Maine’s 100% online Ed.D. in Educational Leadership is designed for experienced educators who are ready to take the next step in their professional or academic careers. Students will deepen their understanding of schools, districts, state and national policy, and leadership practice in PreK-12 schools.

Cohort Model

Students take all their classes together while working toward their degrees in a cohort model. Cohorts allow students to learn from their peers and professors in a collaborative environment.

Contact Us

Have questions about earning your Ed.D. in Educational Leadership online with UMaine? Contact Amanda Cupps, UMaineOnline Senior Advisor.

Amanda Cupps, M.Ed.

UMaineOnline Senior Advisor

207.307.4199 |

Schedule a Meeting


The Ed.D. in Educational Leadership supports educators in PreK-12 leadership positions over the course of four years. To begin the program, students will take one eight-week class during the summer (May term), then two eight-week classes in the fall and two eight-week classes in the spring. The cohort continues to meet weekly during the dissertation phase, ensuring ongoing support from peers and faculty during the independent research portion of the program. All courses are distance synchronous with one evening meeting per week via Zoom.

  • EHD 676: Doctoral Seminar in Educational Leadership (3 credits) Summer
  • EHD 602: Directed Readings (3 credits) Fall
  • EHD 690: Foundations of Inquiry (3 credits) Fall
  • EAD 653: Statistics for Scholarly Practitioners (3 credits) Spring
  • EHD 654: Educational Policy Formulation and Analysis (3 credits) Spring
  • EHD 661: The Sociology of Education (3 credits) Summer
  • EAD 655: Qualitative Analysis for Scholarly Practitioners (3 credits) Fall
  • EAD 647: Organizational Learning and Development (3 credits) Fall
  • EAD 660: The Adult Learner in PreK-12 Education (3 credits) Spring
  • EAD 661: Advanced Educational Supervision (3 credits) Spring
  • EAD 698: Advanced Research Methods (3 credits) Summer 
  • EAD 648: Responsible Conduct of Research in Education (3 credits) Fall
  • EAD 663: Dissertation Proposal (3 credits) Fall
  • EAD 664: Dissertation I (3 credits) Spring
  • EAD 665: Dissertation II (3 credits) Summer
  • EAD 667: Dissertation III (3 credits) Fall
  • EAD 668: Dissertation IV (3 credits) Spring

For information about the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership curriculum, please contact the program coordinator, Dr. Maria Frankland.


Applications open on December 15th and close on the last business day of January of each year. 

  • A bachelor’s degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA
  • A master’s degree totaling at least 30 credits with a minimum 3.5 GPA
  • Current employment in schools, community agencies, or other educational roles or settings that allow access to the data necessary to investigate their problem of practice

When you are ready to apply, please first review these application instructions, then submit the following:

  • Online application
  • Official academic transcripts from all post-secondary coursework (master’s and above)
  • An updated résumé/CV detailing your experiences in education and leadership
  • A two-part essay:
    • Part I is a one-page (approximately 250 words) essay describing your leadership experience, especially in educational contexts.
    • Part II is a three-page (approximately 750 words) essay describing the problem of practice you may wish to study in depth during your doctoral program. Please include:
      • a description of the problem of practice you may wish to study and its relevance to educational leadership;
      • discussion of the contributing factors that exacerbate the problem; and
      • what may be done to address the problem (how to bridge the theory-practice gap contributing to the problem of practice.
    • Note: Both parts of the essay should be saved as one file.  Upload it to the portal in the field that asks for a short general essay.
  • Three signed letters of recommendation
    • Two letters should come from a school official/direct supervisor who can a) attest to an applicant’s qualifications, b) speak to support that will be offered to the applicant to address her/his problem of practice throughout the coursework, and c) address why the applicant’s problem of practice is important to address in the school system in which the applicant is a leader
    • One letter should come from professors who have firsthand knowledge of the applicant’s ability to function as a scholarly practitioner and conduct a rigorous study to address a problem of practice
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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of elementary, middle, and high school principals is projected to grow 5% from 2021 to 2031 with about 23,500 openings per year. The median annual wage for principals was $98,420 in May 2021, which was higher than the median annual wage for all occupations of $41,950.